Apple has cash to splash at the Toronto film festival

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Sony Pictures Television
Zack Van Amburg and Jamie Erlicht are two of the masterminds behind Apple's original content strategy.
Photo: Sony Pictures Television

Apple may be commissioning its own TV shows, but it’s also picking up finished productions, too. With that goal in mind, Apple is sending some of its top production names to the Toronto International Film Festival this week to try and acquire new content.

According to trade magazine Variety, at least one of Apple’s top entertainment programming execs, Zack Van Amburg and Jamie Erlicht, will be in attendance at the festival — and they’ll have “checkbooks in hand.”

This is the first time that either will attend the Toronto festival representing Apple. Both joined the company in 2017, having previously served as presidents of Sony Pictures Television.

It’s not clear what content Apple is interested in acquiring, although in the past it has bought documentaries exhibited at film festivals.

Along with Apple, representatives from Amazon, Netflix and Hulu will be attending the festival on the hunt for new purchases.

Apple’s original content ambitions

Apple currently has more than 20 original series in various states of development. Variety notes that Apple has “aggressively pursued” a number of high profile TV series, but has so far been “less aggressive” when it comes to feature films.

Apple hasn’t yet revealed exactly how it plans to distribute its content, which some analysts suggest could earn billions of dollars for the companyPopular theories range from giving its shows away for free to launching its own Netflix-style streaming subscription service.

Source: Variety